Categories and Criteria
Outstanding Faculty Awards are given annually to recognize individual efforts as well as that of departments. The recognition is categorized various ways and each award has specific criteria. Each category and its respective criteria are explained below.
Full-time faculty at the rank of Instructor or above, or part-time faculty with at least five years experience teaching at UND. Individuals who have previously won an award are not eligible for ANY award for FIVE years.
Departments which have previously won a Departmental Excellence in Teaching or Departmental Excellence in Service award are not eligible for these awards for THREE years.
UND Foundation/ McDermott Award for Excellence in Teaching, Research or Creative Activity and Service
The award for Outstanding Faculty Scholar honors a faculty member who has a demonstrated record of excellence in all three of these traditional faculty roles:
- research/creative activity
- service to the university, the profession, and/or the community
Only faculty are eligible to nominate.
Outstanding Service Awards are given to both individuals and departments.
Outstanding Faculty Development or Service
This award honors a faculty member who draws on his or her professional expertise to serve the university, the profession, and/or the broader community in several of the following ways:
- through academic citizenship activities such as advising of student groups; student and/ or faculty mentoring; leadership in faculty governance; faculty development activity, etc.
- through professional/disciplinary service such as: leadership in professional organizations, serving as editor/reviewer for scholarly publications, consulting with other institutions on accreditation or program evaluation teams, etc.
- through community service such as providing creative or technical assistance to public and private organizations such as schools, governmental agencies, arts organizations, and/or social service agencies; making public presentations/performances for general community audiences; serving on community advisory boards, etc.
Departmental Excellence in Service
The departmental service award honors an academic department which:
- makes a commitment to service as an important faculty role
- collectively makes significant contributions in the areas of academic citizenship, professional/ disciplinary service, and service to the community
Only faculty are eligible to nominate.
Outstanding Teaching Awards are given to both individual faculty members and departments.
The Individual Outstanding Teaching Awards include the:
- Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Awards (2-3 awards)
- Outstanding Graduate or Professional Teaching Award (1 award).
Do you know a professor who you think is an outstanding teacher? What makes them "outstanding"? Do they . . .
- teach effectively, inspire enthusiasm for learning, arouse curiosity, and stimulate independent and critical thinking?
- set high expectations, help students to meet them and provide worthwhile feedback to students on their learning?
- show respect and concern for students, offering them effective and sympathetic guidance?
- demonstrate thorough knowledge of their subject matter including recent developments in their field?
- organize the course material and present it cogently and imaginatively?
- use innovative design and delivery of course content?
- have an interest in current and effective approaches to teaching, and a willing to try new ideas?
- provide learning opportunities that extend beyond the classroom?
- (for graduate/professional awards) effectively guide students in the kinds of research and/or creative activity expected of them as professionals?
- (for graduate/professional awards) provide a positive role model for young scholars in the discipline?
These characteristics described many good teachers, but there are other traits as well and teachers may merit an award on various bases. Individual teaching awards honor undergraduate and graduate or professional teachers who meet a high standard. You can best support your candidate for the award by addressing the strongest characteristics of good teaching you believe they possess. When you address these characteristics provide solid evidence and concrete examples to build the strongest case. Think in terms of constructing a clear and persuasive argument for how and why your candidate does what the criteria specifics and therefore is deserving of the award. It helps to avoid vague, generalized statements ("She inspires enthusiasm for learning.") that do not convey in a clear and tangible way how that enthusiasm is inspired. What specifically happens in that teacher's class that builds a desire to learn in students? Give illustrations. Tell a brief story. If you believe the faculty member in question shows respect and concern for students, go beyond making a simple statement to that effect and give concrete evidence: what kinds of behaviors and activities illustrate this attitude? Can you speak to the experience of a particular student or class? What takes place in his or her classroom that clearly conveys that respect?
Departmental Excellence in Teaching
- The departmental teaching award honors a department which:
- demonstrates collective excellence and/or innovation in classroom/lab teaching, advising, and or curriculum development (see above)
- takes seriously its commitment and responsibility to all students--both those who are majoring in the discipline and those who are taking classes for other reasons
- creates educational challenges and opportunities for students who major in the field
Those eligible to nominate
- students and alumni
- faculty and staff
The Outstanding Faculty Academic Advisor Award is also funded by the Alumni Foundation. Information on the award is found here.